Knowing when to say those three special words is agonising at the best of times for us awkward turtles, but we aren’t doing too bad. Most of us say it in the first three months, although 10% of us say ‘I love you’ only a week into a relo, and almost half of us don’t say it at all. Yikes. We need a lesson in love languages.
For those of you who aren’t really sure where you’re at or if you’re ready to say I love you, it can be super scary. Especially because eHarmony‘s new study shows that 40% of Aussie couples are in loveless relationships, and wouldn’t consider saying ‘I love you’ to their partner. Ummm, what?
Don’t stress if your bae hasn’t dropped the L bomb yet though, some people just take a while. Maybe they’re nervous, or scared of being vulnerable. There are other ways to show that you love someone anyway – I mean, just look at all the love languages. There’s one for every person, and I guarantee you that learning love languages is totally going to change your relationship game.
So, what are love languages?
When I told my partner I was going to write about love languages, he said “but you don’t even speak French.” So, clearly this is not as common knowledge as I thought it was. Love languages are not Romance languages like he assumed – they are the different ways people show their love. Essentially, the way people show their affection in relationships can be categorised into ‘love languages’, and these can be used to better understand your partner.
Words of Affirmation
Compliments are the best. Words of affirmation are nice things you say to your partner to build them up. Think compliments or always thanking you for doing things. Some people show their love by appreciating you verbally, and straight up telling you they think you’re great and love what you’re doing.
YES “Thanks so much for helping me tidy up, it helped things get done much quicker.”
NO “Finally, I was beginning to worry you were going to make me do this on my own.”
Plus, more than half of Aussie’s reckon that saying ‘I love you’ is the best way to show someone you love someone, so verbal love is def a popular category.
Who doesn’t love gifts?! Gift giving can be super sweet – it makes the person receiving the gift feel special and cared about, and shows that their partner thinks about them when they’re not there. Gifts don’t have to be elaborate and expensive – little tokens of appreciation and thoughtfulness are great too!
Acts of Services
We all love favours, especially when they come with no strings attached – just caring people doing nice things for the ones they love. If you like helping your partner by doing things for them that you know they would appreciate, then this is one of your love languages. Helping them with homework, cooking dinner for them, cleaning up, giving them a shoulder massage cause you know they’ve been complaining about being sore for ages – these are all acts of service.
Quality time is when you spend time with your partner where your attention is undivided – so not watching tv while talking, or being on your phone at the same time, or hanging in a group of friends. This is personal, intimate time together where you can hang out and enjoy each other’s company (and other things, if you know what I’m saying). It includes just chilling on the couch and having a chat or cuddle, or going for walks, or a romantic dinner.
This one’s pretty self-explanatory – things like holding hands, hugging, cuddling, kissing, a steamy make out sesh, and sex. Also includes smaller more casual touches – resting their head on your shoulder, having an arm around you while watching a movie, or even a quick peck on the forehead are also all expressions of love. eHarmony’s study said that over a third of millennials say ‘I love you’ for the first time in bed, so get your freak on!
You’re probably thinking “I do all of these!” which may indeed be true, but everyone has a love language that speaks to them more than the others. Knowing which one is your partner’s love language and speaking it can be the difference that keeps your romance alive.
Figure out your love language here, and then go forth and love each other accordingly!
Image Sources: GIPHY.